Body Image Woes

Got up at 5AM, had a little protein shake, headed over to the gym for an early morning workout in the bitter-ass cold. I ran on the treadmill for 15 minutes alternating between an 8 RPM and a 4.5 RPM. Good little cardio workout, worked up a nice sweat. Followed by an hour of weight lifting.

After my workout, I felt invigorated, felt empowered. I treated myself to a longer than normal shower planning how the rest of my day would go. But, this mirror outside of my shower ruined the awesome feeling I was having. My stomach looks like it has morphed into its own being, much like a character in a Star Wars film. I never really look at myself naked. I have not quite learned to embrace my curves, so I avoid them- which I am AMAZING at.

I could not shake this feeling. It stuck with me throughout the day. Made me aware of my posture( which is a good thing I suppose). Made me aware of how my bra was digging into my back fat all day (not sure if this is a good or bad thing, obv I need new bras but I would prefer not to notice being uncomfortable…)

I can remember feeling uncomfortable in my own skin starting in kindergarten. I was the flower girl in my cousin’s wedding. At the age of 5 I was concerned about my dress size. I can remember doing sit ups on the living room floor prior to going to the fitting. I can remember tensing up as the measuring tape measured my stomach. I can also remember comparing myself to other little girls in the class wishing I had a body like Kailyn or Megan instead of my body.

Decorating the tree with mom and brother Michael circa 1991
Decorating the tree with mom and brother Michael circa 1991

I was not a big girl, I was quite petite. Family members actually called me “Little Bits”.  I just happened to have a little potbelly and it haunted me. Now 22 years later, it still does. How sad is that? I have hated my body for at least 22 years now. Still have not figured out how to be comfortable in this skin (and fat, and muscle) of mine.

There are many things that need to be done in order to get through this Debbie Downer time of mine. Because, I do not always feel this dissatisfied with my body. I know that working out is a big part of it. I feel more confident when I am working out regularly, I feel strong because I am strong.  And working out is going pretty well! I have not been perfect since recommitting myself to a running/ workout schedule but I have done well. I have ran more days than I haven’t. And that is a win. Esp since winter is DRAGGING on.

Eating well is also part of it, which is a hard concept for me to accept and even harder for me to follow. Food has always been a reward, a comfort, brought me happiness and oso much more. Food has also brought me shame, frustration and made me feel like a big ol’ pile of poo. Trying to live a life that is not all counting calories and carbs but that is also not eating chimichengas like they are going extinct is really harder than it should be, in my humble opinion. I guess when you have had these issues for so many years they are a bit ingrained….

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